Football Championship Series
NAIA Football Weekly Report No. 4
Saturday marks the first-ever meeting between the two programs, and is the first of a home-and-home series for Webber International and Saint Xavier. The Warriors are the second-consecutive opponent from The Sun Conference for the Cougars.
NAIA Football Game of the Week Results:
Lyon (Ark.) played its first varsity intercollegiate game in 64 years on August 29 when it hosted No. 22 Tabor (Kan.). The Scots, who are members of the Central States Football League, lost the game 45-21. Despite the loss, running back Michael Bowles had a strong performance with a game-high 189 rushing yards and two touchdowns on 28 attempts.
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The Warriors are the reigning The Sun Conference champions, but are looking to make their first-ever playoff appearance this season.
No. 10 Grand View (Iowa) at Avila (Mo.)
Saturday, Sept. 19 6 p.m. CDT Bruce R. Deaton Memorial Field Chicago, Ill.
Wide receiver Stephen Simms has been Rhodes top-target for a second-straight season. Simms, who ended last year with a team-best 1,134 receiving yards, if off to a hot start once again with 324 receiving yards and three touchdowns on only 25 catches. His top performance of the season came last week against Ave Maria seven catches for 126 yards. Simms has caught at least one touchdown pass in six-straight games dating back to last season.
Three NAIA football coaches Monty Lewis of Friends (Kan.), Paul Troth of Missouri Valley and Mike Feminis of Saint Xavier are within striking distance of the 150-win plateau. Troth leads the trio with 147 victories, followed by Feminis with 146 and Lewis with 145.
Darius Page is the teams leading rusher with 346 yards fourth-best total in the NAIA and six touchdowns on 62 attempts. The New Orleans, La., native is second in the NAIA in scoring with 36 points. Page set a career-high with 177 rushing yards in the Warriors win against Arizona Christian.
Make Plans Now to Visit Daytona Beach!
Webber International has won 10 of its last 11 games dating back to 2014.
NAIA Football Weekly Report No. 4
You know you want to go — so book now! For only the second time since 2008, the NAIA Football National Championship will be in the newly renovated Daytona Beach Municipal Stadium in warm, sunny Daytona Beach, Fla. Visit explore the many reasons that youll want to bring the family to Daytona Beach for the National Championship and the holidays! For information on NAIAs partner hotels and details on the Championship schedule, visit
Defensively, the Cougars are surrendering an average of 31.3 points per game. Linebacker Michael Lafenhagen leads the team with 21 total tackles (11 solo).
A non-conference battle between No. 20 Webber International (Fla.) and No. 8 Saint Xavier (Ill.) is slated as this weeks NAIA Game of the Week, as voted by NAIA football fans on Facebook and Instagram.
Webber International boasts a talented rushing attack that ranks second nationally in total rushing offense (918), fifth in rushing offense per game (306.0), 12th in third down conversion percentage (48.5 percent) and 15th in total scoring offense (96).
Week 2 (Sept. 12) No. 15 Baker (Kan.) (H) def. No. 19 William Penn (Iowa) (V), 48-13
Linebacker James Waldron leads the team in tackles with 20 (six solo).
No. 16 Valley City State (N.D.) at Waldorf (Iowa)
Note portions of this information was provided by the Webber International and Saint Xavier Sports Information Department
Bluefield (Va.) at No. 3 Lindsey Wilson (Ky.)
RV Rocky Mountain (Mont.) at No. 7 Carroll (Mont.)
Simms moved into Saint Xaviers top 10 list for career receptions during last weeks game against Ave Maria. With his seven catches last week, Simms now has 159 career receptions surpassing former Cougar standout Wes Gastel (2009-12) with 153.
Municipal Stadium – Daytona Beach, Fla.
No. 15 Montana Tech at RV Eastern Oregon
The Cougars survived a late rally to earn a 24-21 win at Ave Maria (Fla.) last weekend. Sophomore safety Robbie Brindley sealed the win with an interception in the closing seconds of the game. It was a first quarter, 22-yard field goal by Abdul Mahdi that proved to be the difference in the contest, as both clubs scored seven points each in the second, third and fourth quarters.
No. 14 Doane (Neb.) at Hastings (Neb.)
The inaugural game of 2015 featured Montana State-Northern and Dickinson State (N.D.) on August 22. The Blue Hawks, aided by a pair of Montana State-Northern turnovers, won the contest 17-7. Dickinson State quarterback Robert Sterling accounted for 170 of the Blue Hawks 222 total yards and was responsible for both of the teams touchdowns one rushing and one passing.
Trinity International (Ill.) at No. 17 Saint Francis (Ind.)
Head coach Kelly Scott is in his 13th season with the Webber International football program 10th year as the head coach. Scott, who led the Warriors to the inaugural The Sun Conference title a year ago, is the only original member of the coaching staff from Webber Internationals first season in 2002. He served as the defensive coordinator before taking the helm in 2006.
Peru State (Neb.) at No. 13 Missouri Valley
Week 1 (Sept. 5) No. 4 Carroll (Mont.) (H) def. No. 1 Southern Oregon (V), 20-26
For the second consecutive year, the NAIA Football National Championship will take place at Municipal Stadium in Daytona Beach, Fla. Prior to last years title game, the game had been held in Rome, Ga., the previous six years. Municipal Stadium, which was built in 1988, is the home field of NCAA Division I Bethune-Cookeman (Fla.). For more information on the 2015 national championship, clickhere.
For more information on NAIA football clickhere.
Saint Xavier enters the contest with a 2-1 mark. The teams lone loss came in its season opener against top-ranked Marian (Ind.), 45-14, on August 29.
Defensive lineman Edward Roberts ranks third nationally with a team-best four sacks on the year, while the defensive back duo of Donte Taylor and Daniel Sizemore are tied for third in the country in interceptions with two each.
Sterling (Kan.) head coach Andy Lambert enters the week six wins shy of No. 100. Lambert and the rest of the Warriors (0-1) take the field Saturday at Kansas Wesleyan
South Division Avila (Mo.), Baker (Kan.), Central Methodist (Mo.), Evangel (Mo.), MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan.) and Missouri Valley
No. 24 Reinhardt (Ga.) at RV Georgetown (Ky.)
No. 24 Tabor (Kan.) at RV Ottawa (Kan.)
No. 23 Langston (Okla.) at Panhandle State (Okla.)
No. 2 Morningside (Iowa) at Dordt (Iowa)
No. 20 Webber International (Fla.) (2-1, 0-0 TSC) at No. 8 Saint Xavier (Ill.) (2-1, 1-0)
No. 18 Benedictine (Kan.) at No. 21 MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan.)
A pair of powerhouse programs will do battle on Thursday, Sept. 24, as No. 3 Morningside (Iowa) hosts NCAA Division III Wisconsin-Whitewater. The contest, slated for a 6 p.m. CDT kickoff, will be broadcast live on ESPN3. For the full release, clickhere.
For a complete list of NAIA statistical leaders, clickhere.
Concordia (Neb.) at No. 9 Northwestern (Iowa)
NAIA Football Game of the Week No. 3
No. 19 Montana Western at Montana State-Northern
North Division Benedictine (Kan.), Culver-Stockton (Mo.), Graceland (Iowa), Grand View, Peru State (Neb.) and William Penn
Saint Xavier showcases one of the NAIAs top passing attacks, leading the NAIA in total pass offense (1,049), while ranking seventh in pass offense per game (349.7). The Cougars have eclipsed 350 passing yard in two-of-three games this year, including a season-best 416 yards against Mid-States Football Association Midwest League rival St. Francis (Ill.).
Saint Xavier is 19-3 all-time when playing under the lights at Bruce R. Deaton Memorial Field. The lights were added to the stadium prior to the 2006 season.
This weeks Top 25 schedule (all games on Saturday)
By Alan Grosbach, Manager of Communications and Sports Information
Marian (Ind.) claimed the No. 1 ranking in the first regular-season edition of the NAIA Football Coaches Top 25 poll. The top billing is the second-straight for the Knights and 11th in program history. For the complete release, clickhere.
No. 4 Southern Oregon at College of Idaho
Graceland (Iowa) at No. 4 Baker (Kan.)
Quarterback John Rhode, who is in his second full season as the starter, keys the passing attack for Saint Xavier. The Chicago Heights, Ill., native lists among the top 10 nationally in four statistical categories total offense (2nd; 970); total passing (2nd; 992), passing yards per game (5th; 330.7) and total offense per game (7th; 323.3). Rhode owns 5,876 career passing yards to rank fourth on the clubs all-time passing list.
Earlier this summer, the Heart announced a broadcast agreement with Niles Media Group to televise football games for the 2015 season. Games will be available on ESPN3, as well as in the Kansas City area on KSMO-TV. For the complete release and television schedule, clickhere.
No. 20 Webber International (Fla.) faces No. 8 Saint Xavier (Ill.) in the NAIA Football Game of the Week
No. 1 Marian (Ind.) at No. 11 Robert Morris (Ill.)
Similar to Saint Xavier, Webber International enters Saturday with a 2-1 record. The Warriors downed then-No. 16 Campbellsville (Ky.), 35-25, last weekend. Webber International also knocked off Arizona Christian, 48-21, in its season opener on August 29.
Central Methodist (Mo.) at No. 12 William Penn (Iowa)
With the addition of Grand View (Iowa) and William Penn (Iowa), the Heart of America Athletic Conference (Heart) will break into two divisions for the first time in its history. The winner of each division will earn an automatic berth into the 2015 FCS.
No. 22 Dakota Wesleyan (S.D.) at Midland (Neb.)
Saint Xavier head coach Mike Feminis commands the most successful college football program in the state of Illinois since 2000 with 142 wins (142-45) during that span. In his 17th season (all at SXU) with a career record of 146-51, Feminis is quickly closing in on the 150-win career milestone.
THE EXPERTS IN THE BUSINESS OF SMALL COLLEGE ATHLETICS
Branden DeShields has also been a force out of the backfield for the Warriors. He is second on the club with 278 rushing yards only 42 carries. DeShields, who totaled only 13 carries through the first two games this season, ran the ball 28 times for a career-best 181 yards.